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Marketing and Motivating Boomers and Beyond

Archive for the ‘60+’ Category

Mature Marketing Links of the Week- Boomers & Health

Monday, November 17th, 2014

It’s the start of a new week, which means a fresh look at the mature marketing news that had people talking.  This week is all about the boomer and their approach to staying healthy.  Have something to share?  We’d love to hear from you.

MOST CLICKED: 84% of baby boomers turn to the web for health-related insights according to a recent Klick HealBoomer and health related online searchesth article.  The survey examined responses across all generations, and explored how people use the web for health-related searches, questions and needs. Other insights from the survey: 27% of boomers and 22% of silents use the web to access personal health info while 58% use the web to learn more about health symptoms.   The study also found that boomers and seniors are least likely to refill prescriptions online.

Discover more here.

MOST SHARED: Boomers are increasingly more focused on sustaining their wellness, and look to the healthcare industry for helping them achieve it, according to a new eMarketer article.

Marketers are looking for ways to encourage them to take more responsibility for their own care and become comfortable with technology that will reduce long-term costs and keep them healthier. Digital advances, including electronic health records, mobile apps, video and wireless monitoring technology, allow for widespread adoption of digital care management.
The takeaway for senior living?  A focus on wellness (and the programs to back up that dedication) is mission critical for enticing your residents of tomorrow, as boomers have a renewed passion for not just being healthy, but thriving.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – All The Singular Ladies

Monday, November 10th, 2014

Insider knowledge for your Monday morning: Creating Results’ team member Sally O’Donnell LOVES Beyonce. So it is with respect for both dynamic young women that we drew inspiration for this week’s headline. Indeed, it was the singular situations of women (specifically, dynamic older women) that captured the bulk of attention and action on social media platforms last week.

Just what were the top links for those marketing to 50+ women and men? Read on.

1. MOST SHARED: 1 in 5 single, senior women in America lives in poverty, with less than $11,173 a year. This video from the National Senior Citizens Law Center presents, as the Center puts it, “the stories of four brave and honest women as they share the reality of growing old poor in America.”

You also can view the video above at http://bit.ly/1sojby4.

Older women are more likely to live alone than older men. And they’re far more likely to live in poverty. As the video notes, 1 in 5 seniors heading into retirement have no retirement savings at all. Mature marketing pros need to be aware of the many seniors who are struggling to pay bills, to eat, to pay for healthcare, to hold their heads up on a daily basis.

2. MOST CLICKED: Another video, but a very different group of older women … This song by Donnalou Stevens made us smile, and made our followers on Twitter and Facebook click through.

You also can view the video above at http://bit.ly/10N42Ag.

RELATED: “If you want a younger model, I wish you well, sweetpea. If you can’t see what it is you have, then you ain’t having me” — Donnalou could have been singing to many major advertisers! As we noted in this September blog post, older adults are unhappy with and frequently ignored by advertising: http://bit.ly/1ucWzGh

3. Also of note:

* Aging dads, running moms – How Skechers is appealing to baby boomers and more: http://buswk.co/1GFeSsN

* Nielsen summarizes new research by The Demand Institute that shows boomers are not going to head south in retirement, as other generations have been perceived to do. They’ll try to age-in-place, making home renovations and accommodations as needed/if possible. http://bit.ly/1stHDiM

Source: Nielsen Wire

Source: Nielsen Wire

Creating Results would be remiss if we didn’t note that the reasons to renovate also are reasons to look at 55+ active adult and senior living communities … where you wouldn’t be consigned to living a singular life …

* Why are we working later in life — because we want to or because we have to? A research fellow at the Sloan Center on Aging and Work shares insights: http://bit.ly/10N7M4P

* Finally, whether women or men, nearly 70% of older adults will NOT use any social media channels for holiday shopping: http://mwne.ws/1stIbFn

 

What singular insights can you draw from this latest group of links? Please share your thoughts in the comments section, below.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week- Road Trips and SEO

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

Happy Monday!  Let’s get right into the mature marketing stories that had people clicking and sharing this past week.  Our focus- a road trip for the books and SEO tips.  Have something to share?  We’d love to hear from you so be sure to add it to our comment section.

Road TripMOST SHARED: For 26 years Gunther Holtorf traveled the world- exploring Brazil, Australia, Paris and even Hollywood…all from his car.  A recent article highlighted snippets of his travels to many breathtaking (and sometimes dangerous) destinations.  In total, he visited more than 170 countries, drove 549,000 miles and even interacted with baboons.

Click here to discover more about Gunther’s travels.

 

MOST CLICKED: The quality of  content is the most important element for SEO rankings.  This is just one insight from a MarketingCharts article for how to effectively improve your search engine optimization.

The article referenced research from Ascend2 and SearchMetrics that examined several ranking factors of search engine optimization.

The importance of keywords in the URL and domain name has disappeared over the past couple of years, to the extent that this “no longer exists as a ranking factor.” However, there are some onpage keyword factors that have a positive correlation with rankings; namely, keywords in description, the title and the H1 heading, with the latter two increasing in importance from last year.

Other results of note:

*The highest ranking content typically has a higher word count.

*Even though its importance has decreased slightly from previous years, backlinks remain incredibly important.

*Look at your webstats, as longer time on site and lower bounce rates matter.

While the importance of some individual factors may shift over time, one thing remains—a properly optimized website is critical to ensure your prospects can find you, and is not a one-time set it and forget it.  It takes care and ongoing review and adjustments.

Read more of the findings here.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Walking the Walk(man)

Monday, October 27th, 2014

For those of you who follow @CreatingResults on Twitter* you know that last week was the annual meeting of LeadingAge, which is “an association of 6,000 not-for-profit organizations dedicated to making America a better place to grow old.” It represents homes and services for the aging.

Creating Results was at the conference sharing white papers, case studies and knowledge with senior communities pros from around the country via booth 1747. We also were live tweeting (reporting, but in bursts of 140 characters of less) from many excellent sessions. Which explains why this week’s round-up of links for mature marketing have a senior living slant.

#LeadingAge14 insights, however, apply to all organizations trying to improve their results with baby boomers and seniors.

Walkman and cassette tapes

(NOT a stock photo. This is a photo taken this morning of my Walkman, a best-ever birthday gift I received two years ago.)

1. MOST SHARED: “In some of our communities we are like Walkmans. We haven’t changed to meet what people now want.”

Robert Snyder of Stonetrust Partners made this statement at LeadingAge on Tuesday, and audiences in Nashville and on Twitter flicked their virtual Bics in agreement.

Snyder was part of a panel on Partnership and Experiential Marketing, along with CR’s own Todd Harff and Paul Duffy of North Hill senior living. His point was that many continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) are stuck in the past — old buildings, gated locations removed from the larger community, “programs” foisted upon residents rather than innovative and engaging lifestyle.

Prospective residents and buyers are not stuck in the past, of course. They’ve abandoned their Walkmans and embraced newer 50+ housing options. They’re also pushing senior living communities and other services to adapt to their demands, desires and dreams.

RELATED: Partnerships are just one way of transitioning a service or residence to become the “iChoice” of today’s older adults. Download handouts and a white paper here: http://creatingresults.com/experiential-marketing

2. TWEETED & REPEATED: A few more items from LeadingAge caught people’s attention last week. They’re all about walking the walk to up your metrics-driven marketing game.

– “Occupancy is the result of a long process of lead generation, marketing & sales.” Investors need whole story. @HJSims — Is your team taking a long term view, and accurately reporting their short term progress towards goals?

– “Doesn’t matter what we do, we ask how can technology help us do this more efficiently & effectively.” @jennenebuckley of Feros Care. Jennene’s team is using off the shelf technology to help Australia’s seniors stay in their homes for longer, with exciting emphasis on social wellness and interactivity.

– Context: as elderly population increases, so does number of adult child influencers. As represented by this chart, shown on Wednesday:

Chart - population by age 1900-2050

 

3. MOST CLICKED: I called it the headline win of the week. “The 50-Year Orgasm” also is an in-depth look at the ageless business of love.

Online dating is a top activity for older adults, as we noted in our Social, Silver Surfers ebook:

“[T]he use of Online Dating sites/communities was influenced by relationship status. Nearly 4% of Married folks [we surveyed] said they had used them (hopefully before they were married), 21% of Singles had and 36% of those in a Committed Relationship had spent some time on Match, OkayCupid and the like. Singles also reported using Classmates and YouTube at a higher rate than the average.”

FastCompany reporter Carol Reed points out that online dating has evolved with older adults, who are a big reason for the dominance of Match.com, the dominant service:

“Match.com … with its relaxed let’s-have-coffee-first approach, was, and is, the first choice of baby boomers, who seem more interested in long-term partners than slap-and-tickle buddies (not that there’s anything wrong with that). They’re also, it seems, willing to fill out the site’s time-consuming profiles.”

Read the article: http://bit.ly/1wuWSf6

Get the ebook: http://amzn.to/HSH0yD

 

* What? You don’t follow us? You’re not getting the advantages of a lovingly curated stream of 50+ marketing news articles, research summaries, insights and social listening? Let’s fix that right away: www.twitter.com/CreatingResults.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Resident Knows Best

Monday, October 20th, 2014

Happy Monday!  This week’s mature marketing stories that had people talking examine the benefits of resident surveys and content marketing. Have something to add?  Please be sure to incorporate in the comment section.

MOST CLICKED: Content marketing (also known as inbound marketing) is all the rage these days.  Why you ask?  Because it generates more leads and sales while increasing your ROI, by highlighting the value of your brand in a non-threatening way.    A recent article examined just how (and why) it is so effective.

First and foremost, the author defines inbound marketing as:

Inbound marketing strives to convert website visitors to customers through tactics that align content with customer interests, nurture these leads along conversion paths into customers, and delighting these customers so they become outspoken promoters of the company. 

Some statistics the article included:

*  80% of business decision makers prefer to receive insights about your brand through a series of pieces.
*  90% of consumers will find the information you incorporate within custom content more useful in their decision making process.
*  Brands that create 15 blog posts per month generate an average of 1,200 leads through that content.
An inbound marketing strategy can be incredibly effective in creating relevant, motivating pieces that inspire your prospects and reinforce why your service or community is THE BEST choice.  How do you approach your strategy?  We’d love to hear your thoughts or discuss how you can take a few easy steps that make your inbound marketing shine.

MOST SHARED: Never underestimate the power of a resident satisfaction survey.  At Creating Results we work closely with many Senior Living clients as they strive to not only attract new prospects, but work with happy residents to generate even more word-of-mouth marketing (and leads) for their communities.  It goes without saying that the more content the resident, the more enthusiastic the recommendation to friends.

A Senior Housing News recent article and webinar discussed just how powerful a resident satisfaction survey can be. The piece followed The Marshes at Skidaway Island, a CCRC in Georgia.  After struggling with resident satisfaction the community decided to do something about it by capturing insights from residents to help improve the community.  The result? Within the first year The Marshes reported positive increases in occupancy, sales and referrals.

Resident surveys can help identify not only areas for improvement, but where your community already is heads above the competition.  But a survey is only as effective as your approach to what happens next, what you do with those insights.

“You get out of a resident satisfaction survey what you put into it,” said Catherine Jenkins, vice president and director of operations management at Life Care Services. “I’m not talking about just the process of getting it distributed, but what you put into those results. … The commitment to put the hard work in [during] the years leading up to that survey is really critical.”

For The Marshes, they received feedback from residents that highlighted the need to make some improvements within their Health Center.  By implementing some changes to their overall approach they were able to move the satisfaction needle from 59% to 90%.  This satisfaction has led to more resident referrals and new members of the community.

Discover more about how you can approach satisfaction surveys when you read the full article.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week-Email and the Economy

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Happy Monday.  This week’s mature marketing links are brought to you by the letter “E”.  Let’s jump right in.  Have something to share or add?  Please leave in the comment section.

MOST CLICKED: E is for EMAIL

We continually work to remind our clients that email isn’t dead.  In fact, it continues to serve as an important avenue for engaging your boomer and senior target markets.  But an email list doesn’t grow on its own—there is a lot of care and nurturing that needs to go into it. Why is growth important you ask?  Each year current subscribers will leave you.  It’s sad but true.  You need to be able to account for the inevitable unsubscribes and bounces your list will receive by continually adding new subscribers.

A recent article focusing on tips for driving subscriptions through offline avenues generated a lot of interest this past week. The author focused on 8 things you can do in your everyday marketing efforts to generate more awareness of your email program.  These tips included:

*  Incorporating incentives for sign up

*  Using a paper sign up at special events

*  Using planned signage to promote

No matter which promotional avenue you pick, remember to highlight the value of your program. You need to give your prospects a reason to join (and engage with you).  Get more tips here when you read the full article.

How do you promote your eNews?  We’d love to hear your ideas.

RELATED: Don’t Let Your Email be Evil

MOST SHARED: E is for ECONOMY

The middle-class is still feeling the pinch, according to an article in The Dallas Morning News.  The author notes:

Now, five years after the recession ended, the economy appears to be improving, but middle-class consumers still haven’t bounced back.

In fact, a recent Federal Reserve report found that more than a third of American households say they’re worse off now than in 2008, and nearly 40 percent said they’re “just getting by” or struggling to do so.

As savings shrink and money remains tight, people continue to scale back. For the mature consumer, this means a focus on the essentials, like healthcare, and possibly putting off a desired home move.  For Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs), opportunities do exist to demonstrate how a move would be smart financially and allow for planning for the future, however this does require examination of how you are positioning your communities during the critical awareness and interest phases of the purchase process.

How do you address the changing economic tide?  We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Read the full article here.

TV viewing “remains solid among older age groups”

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

MarketingCharts.com recently posted an analysis of Nielsen TV viewing data. The upshot? Traditional TV viewing is dropping substantially among US 18-24 year olds. Yet our favorite people — baby boomers and seniors — continue to log significant time in front of the boob tube.

The up & right-ward slope of the maroon and gray lines in this chart show a gradual increase in traditional TV viewing by older adults:

Chart - Traditional TV Viewing By Age - MarketingCharts.com

Source: MarketingCharts.com

Click here to see an interactive version of this chart.

MarketingCharts notes that, contrary to every other age group, 65+ seniors increased their TV time. And while 50-64 year olds decreased traditional TV hours for the first time since the third quarter of 2013, the losses in TV consumption by baby boomers and GenXers are smaller than the losses within the Millennial cohort.

Bruce Springsteen sang “57 Channels (And Nothin’ On).” Today’s marketers are choosing not just between 57+++ TV channels but between traditional broadcast and newer channels such as social and Internet.  Data from sources such as MarketingCharts and Nielsen can help those marketing to baby boomers and seniors make better choices.

 

READ the article: http://bit.ly/YGPW2b

RELATED:

* Boomers are more influenced by advertising than their Gen Y children http://bit.ly/1wUeTmL

* Use of buzzed-about Instagram and Snapchat vs. TV News, by age http://bit.ly/1mLbypj

* TV and newspapers trump social networks for influence on seniors http://bit.ly/14nGboA

 

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Seniors Unhappy With, Ignored by Advertising

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Monday, Monday … you sneaky thing. Already a new week is upon us and, with it, our recap of the articles and links that got the most attention from marketing and advertising professionals this past week.

With ads like this, is it any wonder seniors don't feel they're represented with respect?

With ads like this, is it any wonder seniors don’t feel they’re represented with respect?

1. MOST CLICKED: Seniors say they don’t like the way they’re portrayed in advertising. It’s either “too good to be true” or “sick and feeble.” As MediaPost reported (http://bit.ly/YLcbVA),

“A mere 47% said they felt that seniors are portrayed ‘as people to be respected.’ It probably doesn’t help that most find ads targeting them uninformative, with just 31% finding value in ads for senior living and financial services, and 29% for ads pharmaceuticals.”

Wow. As sometimes happens, even more insights are found in the comments on this article. Richard Hammer wrote:

“I am the target audience that these advertisers are trying to reach. I am here to tell you that I am totally turned off by the ads targeted towards my age group. And that’s because of the three categories that these ads fall into. Senior Living. Pharmaceutical. Financial Services. Old age. Sickness. Poverty. Actors portraying stereotypes that belong to my fathers generation, not to mine. I am in my 60s and things still go better with Coke, The Pillsbury dough boy pops out of my oven on occasion. And Mr. Clean is alive and well and living under my sink. What I wouldn’t give to see a spot for Coca Cola with 60 somethings playing frisbee on the beach.”

Coincidentally, public radio’s Marketplace called Creating Results on Friday to ask why it is that Coca-Cola and other big companies don’t do just that.

Here’s what our team had to say about advertising to seniors on Friday’s show:

What do YOU think? Why would advertisers NOT want to reach viewers, simply because they’re in their 60s? Share your comments below.

2. Also of note:

* Almost half (48%) of older adults participating in the 2014 United States of Aging survey said they would move to an assisted living community if they could no longer care for themselves. Read more via LeadingAge: http://bit.ly/1uOvtTM

* Maine Rallies for Totally New Approach to Senior Care. The package of proposals tries to strengthen aging in place resources that go beyond traditional senior housing options like assisted living. Read more via Senior Housing News: http://bit.ly/1y6fVAu

* 13 Writing Rules from the terrifically-talented Ann Handley of MarketingProfs: http://bit.ly/1uA0s7y

 

All About Housing: Mature Marketing Links of the Week

Monday, September 8th, 2014

Happy Monday!  Let’s jump right into those mature marketing stories of the week that had people talking around the water coolers.  This week’s focus is all about housing.  Have something to add?  Please note in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you.

MOST CLICKED: Don’t blame the Millennials for housing market woes.  At least that is the sentiment in a recent article in Market Watch.  The article is based on new housing purchase insights released by Zillow.  Many homeowners are suffering from negative equity issues, which are preventing them from putting their current homes on the market.  This is especially the case for Millennials and Gen Xers, with the number of underwater homes for these cohorts nearly twice that of baby boomers.  For Sale

While boomers may not be as impacted directly by negative equity, they are still feeling the effects. Those boomers who want to sell homes and downsize are unable to find buyers, as Gen Xers and Millennials aren’t in a position to want to upgrade to a larger home.

According to the director of UCLA’s Richard S. Ziman Center for Real Estate:

Many millennials don’t have the resources to compete with cash offers or engage in bidding wars with older buyers, he adds. “The reality is, negative equity is part of the new normal, and finding creative solutions to keeping homes affordable, available and accessible to this generation will be critical,” he says.

There is good news, however, the article concludes: as home prices rise the negative equity issues decrease.

Read the full article here.

MOST SHARED:  An article referencing the recent report “Housing America’s Older Adults – Meeting the Needs of an Aging Population” discussed the current housing shortage for seniors. Specifically, that there are not enough affordable options that offer senior-friendly accessibility and are well-located.

Some points of the report included:

*  1/3 of boomers and beyond spend more than 30% of their income on housing, which could make it difficult if additional care/support is required as they age.

Younger baby boomers, those now in their 50s, are of special concern, since they’re less financially secure than generations past — thanks to the Great Recession, according to the report. This is a group of people with lower incomes, wealth and home ownership rates, who may struggle to afford housing and long-term care in retirement.

*Most seniors’ homes don’t have accessibility features to help them as they age, including no-step entries and single-floor living.  This makes either substantial renovations or moving required.

*For many seniors there is a  lack of amenities within close proximity to their current homes.  This is especially important as people become unable to drive and require easy access to nearby health-care and opportunities to remain socially active.

Click here to read the full article.

 

Laboring Baby Boomers

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

Yesterday, the United States celebrated Labor Day. According to the United State Department of Labor, “Labor Day … constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” Each year, fewer of those workers are baby boomers, as millions of the cohort have retired in recent years. 

With the aging of baby boomers, we see three labor force trends.

Decline in labor force participation by people 55+

Between the fourth quarter of 2007 to the fourth quarter of 2013, about 5.5 million more people retired. Business Insider reported this as a 16% increase. Despite this, the publication notes, “the labor force participation rate for those 55 years of age and over has only been falling for the last year, whereas the total labor force participation rate has been falling for over five years.”

Chart - baby boomer labor force participation - Business Insider

Source: Business Insider / Matthew Boesler

USA Today reports:

About 76% of those leaving the workforce in 2013 last year represented people over age 55 who say they don’t want jobs, the Labor Department estimates.

“Arithmetically, the Boomers will keep pushing (participation) down done for another 15 years,” said Dean Maki, economist at investment bank Barclays.

Rising 55+ entrepreneurship

Many of the baby boomers who are “retiring” may actually be redefining employment by starting their own ventures. Their age group (born 1946-1964) has had the largest increase in entrepreneurial activity over the last decade, per the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. A 2011 study by Civic Ventures found that  25% of Americans ages 44 to 70 were interested in starting businesses or nonprofit ventures within 5 to 10 years.

Encore careers – a match made in economic heaven?

Boomers are also pursuing new jobs, whether full- or part-time, often called “encore careers.”women-wPlant

Non-profit organization Encore.org reports that boomer interest in encore careers rose 17% between 2011 and 2014.

“More than 25 million Americans 50 to 70 years old are eager to share their skills, passions and expertise in encore careers that address social needs, typically in education, health care, human services and the environment, according to a 2014 study by Encore.org and Penn Schoen Berland. Of this larger group, more than 4.5 million, or 6 percent, are already working for social impact. Another 21 million are ready to join them, nearly six in ten within the next five years.”

Why should boomers want to try a second act, a new chapter in employment? As we noted in a 2012 post called “Re-Thinking Retirement: 6 Lessons For Marketers,” “Work during retirement provides a paycheck … and much more.” 

Baby boomers pursue these encore careers for a mix of reasons, primary among them a sense of purpose. Meeting financial needs and/or earning enough to maintain their lifestyle are also important. 

 

Now that the Labor Day cookouts have ended, and we’re all back to work (sigh), marketers should consider what impact these trends will have on boomer lifestyle and purchase decisions. Then apply those insights to your marketing program. You’ll find your own labors become more effective.

RELATED:  Re-Thinking Retirement: 6 Lessons For Marketers


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